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Univ.-Prof. Mag. Dr. Fridolin Krausmann


Vice Dean for Research of the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies, Professor of Sustainable Resource Use
(Habilitation (venia docendi) in Social Ecology, Klagenfurt University 2004; Dr. in Ecology, University of Vienna 2001; Mag. in Biology, University of Vienna 1994)


Fridolin Krausmann joined the team of the Institute of Social Ecology in 1995 and has since been involved in research, teaching and administrative tasks. Since October 2008 he is Professor of Sustainable Resource Use and deputy head of the Institute of Social Ecology.  He is responsible for the coordination of the research area Social Metabolism and a founding member of the Centre for Environmental History, a platform for networking, research and teaching in environmental history in Austria.

Sustainability problems are not a new phenomenon or restricted to industrial societies but they have accompanied humans throughout their history. I am interested in past and present patterns of society´s use of natural resources, in particular of land, energy and materials. A focus of my research is on he transition from the agrarian to the industrial socio-metabolic regime and the corresponding transformation of society´s natural relations. The energy transition was the underlying process of a far reaching metabolic transition, which fundamentally altered the volume and structure of socio-economic material and energy use and changed the scope and complexity of environmental problems. The metabolic transition is globally ongoing and the shift towards a more sustainable industrial socio-ecological regime a major challenge of the 21st century. Knowledge about historical processes contributes to a better understanding of currently ongoing developments and the role of technology and globalization. It is essential for the development of robust models and scenarios of future socio-metabolic patterns.

My empirical research addresses various scales, from local and regional to national and global. I apply a set of socio-ecological methods to study biophysical aspects of economic development and changes in society-nature interactions. These include material and energy flow accounting (MEFA), ecological footprint and human appropriation of net primary production (HANPP).



Areas of research:

  • Social metabolism 
  • Biophysical aspects of industrialization
  • Energy transition
  • Agricultural systems 
  • Environmental history/historical sustainability science 
  • Human appropriation of net primary production (HANPP)
  • Land use and land cover change
  • Long term socio-ecological research (LTSER)
  • Material and energy flow accounting (MEFA)


Selected presentations


The global metabolic transition. Resource use and economic development during industrialization. World Economic History Congress, Kyoto 2015 - Download .pdf (844 KB)

The global metabolic transition: Trends and patterns in global material use. Materials Research Society, San Francisco 4/2013 - .pdf (1,40 MB)
Human Appropriation of NPP: a measure for planetary boundaries? Planet under Pressure, London, 3/2012 - Download .pdf (1.270 KB)
Development and dematerialization. ISIE-ConAccount, Darmstadt, 9/2012 - Download .pdf (853 KB)
Material Use in Europe, Asia and North America, ESEH, Turku 2011 - Download .ppt (1.040 KB)
Resource Productivity, ISEE, Bremen 2010 - Download .ppt (1.120 kB)
Global bioenergy potential, EEA 2010 - Download .ppt (1.762 kB)
Material Flow Accounting, Conaccount, Tokyo 2010 - Download .pdf (1.888 kB)
Agroecosystems, WCEH, Copenhagen 2009 - Download .ppt (2.557 kB)
Energietransitionen, Toblacher Gespräche 2009 - Download .ppt (1.303 KB)
Global Metabolic Transition, ISIE Lisbon 2009 - Download .ppt (1.159 kB)
Global Biomass Metabolism, NAWARO, Frankfurt 2008 - Download . ppt (8.715 kB)
Industrialization and Socio-metabolic Transitions, ISEE, Delhi, 2006 - Download .ppt (1.260 kB)
Social Metabolism and Land Resources, Prague 2005 - download .pdf (498 kB)
Soziale Ökologie der Industrialisierung, Wien 2005 - download .pdf (473 kB)

Transformation of the Energy System, Oxford 2004 - download .pdf (4,3 MB)
Agrarmodernisierung, Wien 2004 - download .pdf (4,4 MB)
Monitoring the physical economy, Toyohashi 2004 - download .pdf (220 kB)


Fridolin Krausmann 
T ++43 (0) 1 522 4000 412
F ++43 (0) 463 2700 99 412

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